After a wild 2019 offseason that saw several NBA superstars change teams, the summer of 2020 is expected to be considerably more sedate, with fewer marquee players eligible to join new teams as free agents. Detroit Pistons center Andre Drummond is expected to be part of next year’s free-agency class, and with his status as a two-time All-Star and three-time league rebounding leader, he looks to be one of the most sought-after players as other teams battle for his services.
That, however, might not be the case, as a new report from Heavy‘s Sean Deveney suggests. The longtime NBA insider wrote that Drummond, much like Los Angeles Lakers big man Anthony Davis, might not deal with too much “drama” in the 2020 offseason, as it is expected that he will opt out of the final year of his contract with a Pistons then sign a new maximum contract with the team.
While Drummond said in August that he plans to test the free agency waters next summer, most NBA executives reportedly believe that the 26-year-old big man would merely “peek at the market” before re-signing with the Pistons.
“He just won’t have a lot of options,” said an unnamed NBA front-office executive, as quoted by Heavy. “Detroit won’t have a lot of options, either. There won’t be a lot of free-agent money and most of the teams that have it are rebuilding teams who might not want a big like him anyway.”
The executive added that since Drummond is an “old-school” center who fits Detroit’s offensive vision, he might not thrive as much if he signs with another team, given how NBA organizations are now favoring big men who can shoot the ball from outside, on top of their usual duties in the low post. In seven NBA seasons, Drummond has attempted only 68 three-point shots, although as Deveney noted, the 6-foot-11-inch, 279-pound center recently claimed to be working on improving his outside shooting stroke.
As shown on his Basketball-Reference player page, Drummond averaged 17.3 points, 15.6 rebounds, and 1.7 blocks per game while shooting 53.3 percent from the field in the 2018-19 NBA season. Interestingly, more than half of his career three-point attempts were registered last season, as he went 5-for-38 from beyond the arc in 2018-19, translating to a meager 13.2 percent clip.
Separately, Bleacher Report pointed out that Drummond stands to earn more money going forward if he remains with the Pistons. He will be eligible to opt out of his contract after October 21, and while he stands to earn no less than $28.75 million a year, the Pistons could potentially offer him a new contract that will pay him $190 million over five years, as opposed to the maximum $140 million over four years if he chooses to sign elsewhere.